If you like fairytales, here is ours!
Our story begins in 1966 when Henri & Françoise Lévêque decided to create what became later the Chateau de Chantegrive !
They were strong believers of the potential of the Graves "terroir", which convince them to sell their superb stamp collection to acquire their first two hectares.
What happened next is a success story, the result of a relentless work always oriented toward the future and the new technologies. “It was a childhood dream, we made it come true” Françoise & Henri together formed a very dynamic duo, a solid visionary team, and above all: a couple of passionate wine lovers.
50 years later and 96 hectares futher, the new generation of children has taken over the chateau de Chantegrive. Marie Hélène Lévêque carries on the work of her parents with a dynamic passion alongside her mother, brothers and sisters.
The Graves appellation is the only one in France which bears the name of the soil that produces the wines.
Located on the left bank of the Garonne river and bordered to the south west by forests, this geographical situation provides protection from extreme weather systems coming from the Atlantic ocean as well as protection against the risk of drought due to the proximity of the Garonne.
Ever since the Quaternary period the terroir has slept on thick gravelly depo- sits brought down from the Pyrenees by the Garonne over thousands of years. Today these outcrops are made up largely of gravel, shingle, and coarse sand, all mixed with silt and resting on a layer of clay and limestone subsoil. The gentle slopes of the outcrops provide good natural drainage towards the Garonne.
At night the gravelly soil gradually releases the heat stored up during the day, thus contributing to the ripening process of the grapes. The vineyards of Chantegrive are south or south-east facing, which is perfect.
LES GRAVES ET LA GARONNE
An Exceptional Terroir
At Chantegrive the quest for quality revolves around a few simple ideas: firstly, great respect for the soil in order to maintain the right soil/plant balance, and secondly, a perfect mastery of the production in order to realize the full potential of the terroir.
The soil : grassing over the soil is essential in order to encourage a good level of microbial activity and also to improve soil structure. The nutritional elements incorporated into the soil are simply to replenish the elements extracted by the vines. Complementary soil analyses detect any imbalance in soil make-up and allow any necessary rectifications to be made. Computerised plot-by-plot management of the 160 vineyard plots results in extremely precise treatment programmes.
In 2006, the Lévêque family call upon the services of Hubert de Bouard, owner of the world-famous Chateau Angelus, to act as consultant oenolo- gist entrusted with the mission of taking the quality of Chantegrive wines even further. His understanding, his adaptability, and his expert advice have given a tremendous boost to the property in terms of quality.
A never ending quest
The respect of the environment has always been a priority at Château de Chantegrive.
Some keys points:
2015: Admission at the environmental ressource Management program and obtention of Certification ISO 140001.
2010: Wild flowers systematically sown on fallow plots to encourage the presence of bees and other insects.
2009: Construction of a PHYTOBAC cleaning plant for the control of pesticide-contaminated effluent.
2007 Construction of a waste-water treatment plant for cella run-off.